Front Porch Blog

Tiny Asian import wiping out trees

In one S.C. park, 2,068 dead redbays have been counted

[ South Carolina ] A little-used but ecologically important tree is dying in droves along the Southeast coast because of an insect imported through the ports from Asia . The redbay, which typically serves as lush greenery in the 15-25 foot height range in coastal forests, is being killed by the redbay ambrosia beetle — an Asian import that likely arrived in redbay wood used in packing crates. Besides the birds and deer that feed on the leaves and small black fruit, the Palamedes swallowtail butterfly lays its eggs in the redbay. Damaged redbays have been found in 32 S.C. counties and in Georgia and Florida .

News notes are courtesy of Southern Forests Network News Notes





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